Whyte $ Mackay Company
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Whyte $ Mackay Company
Whyte $Mackay Company has it is origin in Glasgow firm of Allan and Poynter founded in November 1843 by a successful chemical manufacturer John Poynter and a ham curer William Allan. Originally, the firm was meant to warehouse dry goods for the grocery trade. In the course of time, the firm changed ownership and the new owner by name William Scott recruited James Whyte and Charles Mackay to help him in running the business. By the end of 1870s whisky, wine and spirits became the commodities for the firm to warehouse. After the death of William Scott, the widow sold the firm to James Whyte and Charles Mackay. During the sale, they made a memorandum of understanding where they agreed on rebranding the name of the company.
The owners thus renamed the firm to Whyte $ Mackay and with immediate response it decided to venture in whisky blending plant. To find and equip the suitable premises they took two years. After the two years, they received their first consignment of malt and grain whiskies and began blending the whiskies to customers order. After a short duration of time, they started blending for the export trade in their own account. Unfortunately, the sales of whisky collapsed but they persisted on the whisky investment and in the beginning of 20th century, the sale of their whisky expanded especially on the eve of the World War 1. In 1919, a limited company was formed in order to place the company on maintenance and care basis. This was because of unpredictable trade trends due to uncertainty after the wartime depreciations. In 1919, Charles Mackay died and in 1921, his partner John Whyte died. In the early 1920s, the firm collapsed due to small concerns and reconstructed in 1926 to reduce its capital level. Once again, the trade started to pick up in the late 1920s with the major market being from North America but the trade lasted for a short time. Eventually, demand for exports to Australia and New Zealand revived the trade in 1930s.
Once again, the outbreak of the Second World War dimmed the prospects. Through determined advertising campaign championed by James Whyte's two sons Alex and Hartley in 1950s, the firm recovery was sustained. After the end of voluntary rationalizing on the home market, the firm started establishing a market in the United Kingdom. In 1960, the firm rebranded its name to Dalmore, Whyte $ Mackay after acquiring the Dalmore distillery company in the northeast of Scotland. By 1965, their brand Whyte and Mickey became the fifth most famous brand in Scotland, which gave them the morale to penetrate in export market.
In 1971, the company became part of Sir Hugh Fraser's SUITS group. In 1988, the company was sold to Brent Walker and to the American Brands in 1990. Since then the company has changed ownership thrice the latest being the United Brand owner by the Indian billionaire Mallya from May 2007.
Founded in 1844 in the docks of Glasgow, Whyte $ Mackay remains true to itself and its founders' pioneering spirit. They maintain their brand quality without making more considerations on the profits like the customer needs in terms of quality, tastes and blends.
The company through their website further asserts that they enjoy their Glasgow roots where they enjoy a wide range of traditional industry, sports, and scientific inventions. They still hold their symbol of "double lion" from the beginning that is recognized over the whole world as well as being the best blended Scotch whisky. Since it began, the company has produced several brands of whisky such as the thirty years, supreme, old luxury, and special, among others. The company has won several awards the latest being the Silver medal at the 2010 International Spirits Competition (ISC)
This paper focuses on addressing the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of this company's departments that despite the challenges faced in its initial stage has emerged successful. A SWOT analysis is an analysis that evaluates the strengths and address what a company can do better compared to the competitors in terms of market, finances, labor and ethics (Hill and Westbrook 24). The weaknesses evaluate both internal and external factors by focusing on what the company can improve, what to avoid, factors that affect the company growth in terms of market, finances, and labor (US. Dept. of Agri. 2008). The opportunities evaluate the new ventures, changes in technology that can help the company increase its production and performance, and other events to boost the company (Hill and Westbrook 37). Finally, the threats evaluate the external factors that could cause threat to the company's' performance.
Evaluation of company's' financial performance is an essential step in planning for the future (Obst, Graham and Christie 43). During the planning of a business that predicts and looks forward for a future, it is fatal to have the full knowledge of how the business is performing financially at a given time. The understanding is done through review of the past year performances using financial measures. These measures include profitability over the last three years, asset growth, change in owner's equity and cash flow for the same period. Though there are no available written financial statements for Whyte $ Mackay company, the above measures can help in measuring the performance.
Financial strengths: The Company initially depended on itself financially. Though much emphasis has not been on its financial analysis, it is evident from the history that the company through the challenges it faced in its initial stages was able to revive after several collapses. This is an indication that though there was no enough market for the company to sell its products it fully managed to sustain itself through other means. As time progressed, it was able to withstand the market fluctuations by utilizing the profits and resources available. The acquiring of a Dalmore distillery in 1960 further ascertains that the company financial status was strong. In addition, in 1971, it joined the Sir Hugh Frasers SUITS. For companies to join hands they must be performing well financial to help each other in venturing more.
Financial Weakness: The financial weaknesses of Whyte $ Mackay company are associated with its initial stage. The collapsing of the company in the late 19th century and the depreciation of trade after the death of Whyte and Mackay in 1919 and 1920 and after the First World War illustrates a weakness in finance. During the company plan, a company should set aside enough capital to cater for fluctuations in trade as well as other unpredictable factors. The failure of the company to withstand changes in the business environment then indicates poor financial performance or unpreparedness of a company to such changes.
Financial opportunities: Whyte $ Mackay company history is full of change of ownership. The change of ownership is a form management formulation meant to achieve the company's goal. The change of ownership, collaboration or acquisition of any organization is a mean of increasing the company's capital. Whyte $ Mackay has since its foundation changed ownership severally, the latest being the acquisition of the company by an Indian spirits company (United spirits). The other company financial opportunities are through the acquiring of Dalmore distillery in 1960 and change of the company to a limited company in 1926 (Hill, Westbrook 19). The acquiring of Dalmore was a means of the company expanding production that further leads to more sales and profits. On the other hand, the change of the company was to influence the public to invest in the company through shares, a means of sourcing more capital.
Financial threats: the company's financial threats include the fluctuations in trade that caused low sale that eventually resulted to low profits or sometimes losses. The imposition of high taxes on beers, spirits and other alcoholic drinks is also another threat. The final threat to finance is the high charges of advertising and advertising regulations. This causes the company's financial department to dig deep in their account to cater for the advertising costs.
The market department is very important to every organization since it foretells the future of an organization as it is the department that focuses on trade and market. A company with a good marketing department that is able to carry out the required analysis to the market and trade trends is always successful. The success of any company depends on this department as it generates all sources of finance. The profits come through sales and debtors as well as investors consider the performance of the company (US. Dept. of Agr. 2008).
Market strengths: As seen in the history of the company, market has been essential to this company. The company ability to produce several brands of whisky has made it possible to venture into different markets. Further, the production of high quality and tasty brands makes the company the top whisky company in Scotland because, any market demands for several brands, quality and tasty brands (Hill and Westbrook 34). From the company website, they assert that their mission has been to maintain the quality of their products. Their brands though expensive are able to penetrate the market as they are worth their prices in terms of taste and quality. Further, Whyte $ Mackay company has been able to penetrate and take advantage of the local market in Scotland as well as the surrounding countries. The company has also managed to advertise itself to recover its glory. In 1950, with the direction of Whyte's sons the company managed a good come back that made it much stronger in market. To further venture in the Glasgow, the company managed to relaunch in 2006 to regain, reestablish and reaffirm it is rightful icon symbol of the brand and company. At the same time, the use of a special brand symbol "double lion" has helped the company to venture the market. The symbol has influence in that many people belief that lion is a symbol of braveness and heroism.
Market weakness: The weaknesses include the failure to withstand the fluctuations in market. The higher prices of their brands make the brands to be for a certain class of the people. In addition, specialization in whisky's alone is a disadvantage to the company. The collapse in the whisky market would mean a collapse of the company. That is why the company collapsed or faced challenges severally during the fluctuation of whisky markets.
Market opportunities: There are several unventured markets in the world. The acquisition of the Company by the United Group gives the company an upper hand in venturing the markets that united group has been selling its products. With the United spirits enjoying the largest share of the Indian market, the company has a better opportunity to invest in the Indian market. In addition, the United Group has several companies linked to them that operate all over the world. Whyte $ Mackay therefore can as well use the markets of these companies to venture more markets. Further, the company can use the Kingfisher Airline, an airline owned by the United Group director. This Airline can, as well help the company to promote its market to the countries it operates.
Market threats: The Company faces threats from other competitors that produce whiskeys. The whisky companies in the world are many and failure for Whyte $ Mackay company to take full advantage of it is market means that other competitors will come in. In addition, the beer and alcoholic drinks advertising regulation poses a threat to the company to venture to new markets and limiting their force to introduce new brands to the market.
Strengths: The Company has been able to maintain labor through provision of goods wages. It makes maximum use of the potential professionals to ensure maximum growth, where they source expert to run different departments. The experts provide the company with ideas in the matter pertaining production, marketing, and human resource. The advance in human resource consequently makes the handling of labor in the company effective and reliable. This further improves the relationship between the company and it is employee, and the senior management and those down the levels.
Weakness: Since its formation to late 1950s, the top management of the company consisted of the owners and their family members who lacked some knowledge of the professionals. Hiring of family members in a company makes the other employee develop a level of insecurity as they view the company as family set-up. They therefore disintegrate themselves from the family members, which consequently affects the company's affairs as well the relations between the seniors and the other employees. In addition, this further affects the employee willingness to report for the work.
Opportunities: The open labor market globally gives the company the opportunity to outsource professional and other technical labor from allover the world. The acquisition of the company by the United Group further gives the company an advantage to search for professional and learn from other member companies. With advance in technology where machines can complement human labor, the company can invest in machines that would help to make the work easier for them. They can make use of the technology to enhance their maximum production rather outsourcing labor from other countries.
Threats: Due the intense advancement of technology and industrialization in the world, the company faces competition of labor from other sectors and organization. The failure to offer sustainable wages to the labor force causes a threat where the laborers move to other places. Another threat to Whyte & Mackay is globalization. It allows the sourcing of employees from other nations in the world. This would affect the company in that they would either loose some of their employees to other companies in other nations or their target source of employee would be taken by other nations.
Hill, Terry and Westbrook, Roy. SWOT Analysis: It's Time for a Product Recall. Amsterdam: Long Range Planning, 1997. Print
Obst, Wesley., Graham, Rob and Christie, Graham. Financial Management for Agribusiness. Australia: Land links Press, 2007. Print
United States. Dept. of Agriculture. Risk Management Agency. (2008) SWOT analysis: a tool for making better business decisions